my first Omega was the Multifunction Seamaster. I bought it at Macy's in 1992, as a refurbished, because it had been sized and was missing links. I bought it for $375, and had trouble with it the second year, while under warranty. Brought the watch to an Omega dealer in town, and I was treated very well, even though I didn't buy it there. They sent it to Omega (somewhere in U.S.A.), and I had it back in two weeks. 5 years later, when it was well out of warranty, it malfunctioned again, so I brought it to the same AD, and he forwarded it (gratis) to Omega, and again I had it back in two weeks. They replaced the entire movement and they didn't charge me a dime. I thought to myself...wow...these luxury watch makers really take care of you!
My only other experience before 2000 was in 1977 with my father's Gallet chronograph. He got it in 1961 and by 1977 it was mine and obviously needed a service. I shipped it to Gallet--I believe a U.S. service center--and I had back within a month. Gallet had simply replaced the whole movement, a Valjoux 72, and I was charged $60. Hasn't faltered (occasional use) to this day, though obviously it's time again for a service.
Wonder what experiences others have had with large luxury or semi-luxury watch brands. Were you treated better in decades past?